• Spain's news in English
 

Spain mourns death of priest with Ebola

Published: 13 Aug 2014 18:23 GMT+02:00

A black hearse transported an urn containing missionary Miguel Pajares's ashes to the chapel of the San Rafael hospital in Madrid, which was decorated with floral arrangements, including one sent by Spain's royal family.

The priest's remains were incinerated in a sealed coffin shortly after he died on Tuesday at the age of 75. No autopsy was conducted so as to reduce the risk of contagion.

Pajares had been in isolation at Madrid's Carlos III hospital since landing in Spain on a military jet last Thursday and he had been treated with an experimental US serum, ZMapp.

The Spanish priest contracted Ebola at the Saint Joseph Hospital in the Liberia capital Monrovia where he worked with infected patients.

Many in Spain consider him to be a hero and the crowd at the funeral services included ordinary Spaniards who did not know him along with government and religious officials.

"We are all human, we need each other, we give our lives for others," said Ana Maria, a 67-year-old from Madrid who attended with her sister Irene Gonzalez-Arnau Campos, 63, who came from Spain's Canary Islands for the funeral service.

Health Minister Ana Mato, who has been criticized for her absence from Madrid while Pajares was in hospital, offered her condolences to the family at the service and said the hospital room where Pajares died was being throughly disinfected.

"All protocols are being followed to the letter," she told reporters.    

The Ebola epidemic in west Africa, the worst since the disease was first discovered four decades ago, has killed more than 1,000 people since early this year, according to the World Health Organization.

Cases have so far been limited to Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, which account for the bulk of victims, and Nigeria, where three people have died.

For more stories about Spain, join us on Facebook and Twitter

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Sun, sea, sand... what about the shopping?
El Corte Ingles in Barcelona. Photo: Tinou Bao/Flickr

Sun, sea, sand... what about the shopping?

Spain draws 65 million tourists a year thanks largely to its beaches. Now it wants them spending on the high street. READ  

100,000 join Madrid anti-austerity rally
An aerial shot of the 100,000 people massing in Madrid's Puerta del Sol: PEDRO ARMESTRE / AFP

100,000 join Madrid anti-austerity rally

At least 100,000 people poured into the streets of Madrid on Saturday in a huge show of support for Spain's new anti-austerity party Podemos, riding a wave of popularity after the election success of its Greek hard-left ally Syriza. READ  

Spain uses stem cells to repair damaged hearts
Doctors at Madrid's Gregorio Maranon hospital announce the successful trial. Photo: Gregorio Maranon hospital

Spain uses stem cells to repair damaged hearts

A Spanish hospital has successfully used stem cells culled from healthy donors to treat seven heart attack victims, in what officials said was a world first. READ  

Israel agrees probe into Spanish soldier's death
Spanish soldiers with the United Nations in Lebanon in an armoured emergency vehicle after picking up the body of Spaniard Francisco Javier Soria Toledo. Photo: Mahmoud Zayyat/AFP

Israel agrees probe into Spanish soldier's death

Spain and Israel have agreed to carry out a joint investigation on the death of a Spanish UN peacekeeper who was killed in Lebanon during Israeli shelling near the border, Madrid said on Friday. READ  

Immigration crisis
At least six dead in shipwreck off Melilla
Immigrants rescued by the Spanish Red Cross in 2013. File photo: Marcos Moreno/AFP

At least six dead in shipwreck off Melilla

Six would-be migrants have died and four are missing after their boat ran into trouble off the coast of the north-African Spanish enclave of Melilla. READ  

Spanish Face of the Week
Is 400 year Cervantes mystery solved?
A portrait thought to be of Miguel de Cervantes by Juan de Jauregui y Aguilar, The Bridgeman Art Library Photo: Botaurus/Wikipedia

Is 400 year Cervantes mystery solved?

Four hundred years after he died a pauper in near obscurity, archaeologists announced that they may have solved the mystery of his final resting place. Meet our Spanish Face of the Week, Miguel de Cervantes. READ  

Madrid stand at tourism expo deemed 'too gay'
Madrid holds one of Europe's biggest gay pride marches every July. Photo: Dani Pozo/AFP.

Madrid stand at tourism expo deemed 'too gay'

Madrid is renowned as one of the most gay-friendly cities in the world, but the city's stand at this year's International Tourism Fair was reportedly repainted at the last minute because the city council deemed it "too gay". READ  

Spanish economy grows by 1.4 percent in 2014
People shopping in the Spanish sales. Photo: Gerard Julien/AFP.

Spanish economy grows by 1.4 percent in 2014

Spain's recovering economy grew by 1.4 percent in 2014, provisional official data showed on Friday, after shrinking by 1.2 percent in the previous year but remains plagued by mass unemployment. READ  

Hash helicopter pilot was Albanian major: reports
Wreckage of the hashish-filled helicopter which crashed near the mountain town of Cortes de la Frontera in Malaga province. Photo: Jorge Guerrero/AFP

Hash helicopter pilot was Albanian major: reports

A helicopter loaded with hashish which crashed in southern Spain on Tuesday after hitting an electricity pylon was piloted by a major with the Albanian army, according to media reports. READ  

'Green' Cordoba wins global praise
Photo of Cordoba: Shutterstock

'Green' Cordoba wins global praise

Cordoba, in Andalucia, southern Spain, might already be world-famous for its medieval former mosque, but now its efforts to go green are also gaining global attention. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
National
The five strangest things about Spaniards
Business & Money
FATCA: 'The age of financial privacy is over'
What's On
Shakira gives birth to second son
International
Spain planned to invade Australia in 1790s
National
Eleven dead as F-16 jet explodes at Spanish air base
National
Police seize jihadi cell prepared to attack Spain
What's On
What's on in Spain: February 2015
National
Spanish jobseekers fail exam with answers
National
Moving to Spain: a guide for beginners
National
Spain's new penal code: key talking points
International
Spain among Europe's cheapest nations: study
Features
Top ten surprising Spanish inventions
National
Spain's Repsol ends Canary oil exploration
National
Court to study paternity suit against ex-king
National
Europe in statistics - from Spain to Sweden
Politics
Catalan president calls early regional election
National
Top ten: must-know Spanish superstitions
International
'Change Schengen rules to catch Islamists': Spain
What's On
Ten ways to spice up your Spanish life in 2015
Health
Spain tops world organ donation rankings
National
5 things no one tells you about renting in Spain
National
'No Pants Subway Ride' hits Madrid Metro
National
Spain's satirical mags back Charlie Hebdo
National
Spain tightens security after Paris terror attack
National
Finally: a Spanish PM bothers to visit Andorra
National
Woman fined for being kissed while driving
Travel
Top travel highlights in Spain for 2015
National
Gallery: Hits and misses of Antonio Banderas
National
Spain's top news in 2015: The Local's predictions
National
Spain's public holidays in 2015: Official list
National
Christmas fireball lights up Spanish skies
National
Top ten: Spain's biggest stories of 2014
International
Madrid: mouse delays international flight for six hours
National
Confirmed: Spain's Princess Cristina to be tried for fraud
National
Did Vikings settle as far south as Spain?
National
Nativity donkey squashed by fat fan
Society
Lifting the lid on Spain's mysterious Christmas lottery
National
Why has The Local got a new logo?
What's On
Top 12 things to do in Spain over Christmas
Politics
Spain passes tough new 'anti-protest' law
Business & Money
Google News quits Spain in paid content row
What's On
How to party like a Spaniard: the ultimate guide
Society
Madrid's shocking slum shames Spanish capital
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

619
jobs available